In Crisis Relief

Will leave it up to the readers to decide who the crisis angel was in this incident :-)

It was 27th Sept evening ( last month ), I was writing something in my computer totally engrossed. I heard some noises outside my flat, but since it was not unusual ( as children often played just in front of my flat ), I ignored it and carried on with my work. When I heard adult voices too, I was bit distracted. I, anyways have a loud neighbour who has this occasional fits of shouting, so decided to ignore again, thinking its her usual drama. More noises came and I had to stop my work. There was lot of commotion it seems.

The place where I stay, I don't really talk much with the surrounding people ~ except perhaps a courtesy hi/hello. There's a neighbour, whom I absolutely despise. She is the nosy Aunty sort, who minds everyone's business except her own. Not much educated, she devotes extra unwanted-attention to me, because, for her single-independent woman living in her own flat is an un-imaginable crime. She has wagged her tongue a lot about me in the neighbourhood of my marital status, or who I go around with ( adding her own masalas & twists ); so, she is like my sworn enemy. I can't stand her, and becos' I can't tolerate her ~ her tongue wags a bit more.

Anyways, in the commotion her voice was the loudest, so I didn't want to go out to see what the issue was. But as the noises grew louder, I just got curious and opened my door. I was surprised, because the entire floor of people had gathered. I asked another neighbour what happened. To my horror, she said, that the flat that was between mine and that nosy Aunty's, had caught fire. The family had gone out locking the door, with their puja 'diyas' lit ~ which perhaps led to the fire. Strong pungent smell and smoke was coming out from underneath and sides of the door, which had led to the panic in the building; and that nosy Aunty screaming her loudest! The family was unreachable on phone and that Aunty had gone totally berserk. Seeing me, she screamed a bit more. Her house was right next, so she had gone ballistic with fear.

Someone suggested to break-in the door; while others were not sure if it was a wise thing to do ~ i.e breaking into someone else's home this way. But since the entire floor was witness to the fire, they decided to go ahead. Then, the hunt for something strong to break the lock started. Someone brought a huge stone grinder ( used in kitchen ). They tried hitting the lock with it, but the sturdy lock wouldn't budge. Nobody seemed to have a hammer. The nosy Aunty kept screaming for someone to bring a hammer ( she only screamed but did nothing on her own ). I remembered I had one, and brought it.

The look on her face when she took the hammer from me was a 'kodak' moment. Nonetheless, they succeeded breaking the lock with my hammer. Everything in the flat was burning; the walls were blackened and electric wires snapped ( luckily the wires didn't burn outside that flat ). We all coughed at the thick black smoke that came out of the room. The fire was still raging. "Call the fire-brigade", the Aunty kept yelling, joined by another one from the floor below. I remembered a bucket of water I had, near my flat door, and quickly went to bring it and gave it to one man standing near. The foolish ladies said, don't pour the bucket; call the fire-brigade instead first. I was like ~ Whoah, lets put as much water we can, else, till the fire-brigade came everything will be burnt. So, I urged the man to pour that bucket, atleast the one which I had given him. Anyway, with water finally poured the fire was doused.

After the fire was put out, and everything calmed down - that nosy Aunty kept saying to everyone repeatedly ( and loud enough for me to hear ) ~ "aaj toh mere dushman hi mere kaam aaya", and perhaps she hoped I'd speak to her. I was amused, but ignored her and moved back to my house.

In times of crisis, when so many lives and property are as stake, you can't afford to think who is enemy/friend etc. We have to do what our gut tells us. That is what I did and will continue to do. And yes, that irritating nosy neighbour still remains my enemy, though I'm glad I could be of help :D

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This post is part of #IncrisisRelief
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  1. ha ha...good story

  2. Loved your closing on this.. And indeed very true.. At a time of Crisis, you really dont know / care who your enemy friend is.


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